I saw this on 247. Athlon ran an article on its choices for the most important player on each B1G team. Here is what it wrote for Ohio State:
LB Baron Browning: This was an unexpected pick. Who would be more important than Dwayne Haskins with Joe Burrow no longer available as a backup? Could Ohio’s State’s running back room really make up for J.K. Dobbins if something happened? How important is Joey Bosa after the Buckeyes lost three other defensive linemen to the NFL Draft? For Athlon, linebacker is where there could be a difference from a top-10 finish and a spot in the College Football Playoff.
Athlon says, “Once again, the Buckeyes are the favorite to represent the Big Ten in the College Football Playoff despite needing to replace six starters on defense. And technically it could end up being seven as middle linebacker Tuf Borland suffered an Achilles injury in the spring, which puts his 2018 season in jeopardy. Browning and Justin Hilliard will compete for Borland's starting spot, a battle that won't be settled until fall camp. While both came to Ohio State as 5-star prospects, Browning appears to have a slight advantage and certainly has the frame (6-3, 238) to man the middle of the Buckeyes' 4-3 alignment.”
The typo about Joey Bosa aside, calling Browning a surprise pick is an understatement. He’s not exactly who I would’ve chosen. For one thing, I don’t recall seeing anything that says he’ll definitely be the starter at MLB.
Who does everyone think is the most critical piece on Ohio State’s preseason chessboard?